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Hong Kong developer moves to cash in on COVID 'donation'

Sun Hung Kai Properties eyes housing complex on plot lent for city's virus battle

A coronavirus isolation facility in Hong Kong. The financial hub set up quarantine centers over fears of a surge in virus cases.   © Reuters

HONG KONG -- A top Hong Kong developer wants to build a multibillion-dollar luxury housing complex on land it lent the city for a COVID-19 facility, triggering concerns it will threaten a wildlife habitat and do little to ease housing shortages.

Sun Hung Kai Properties (SHKP) described the site where the now-closed virus isolation center was built as a "wasteland" with little ecological value. It also cited Hong Kong's perennial housing crunch among the reasons to approve its application for a sprawling development of nearly 10,000 apartments in 36 residential towers with swimming pools and clubhouses, hundreds of parking spots and a retail space.

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